Last updated on December 8th, 2022 at 02:46 pm
When you need to update your PC’s BIOS or UEFI and guide to verify, install or flash a new version
Among the most underestimated components when it comes to updates we find the BIOS or UEFI, which are rarely updated during the life of a computer. Their update is recommended when we install a new hardware component (for example a new CPU or new RAM banks), so as to make the most of the new components without sudden blocks or slowdowns; in all other cases, it is advisable to update the BIOS or the UEFI only if we notice problems during the PC startup or with some old peripherals. Fortunately, almost every PC manufacturer facilitates this type of procedure by making it automatic and only releases updates when there is actually a known problem that needs to be fixed, for example, to fix a motherboard, overheating, or performance problem.
In this guide, we will show you in detail how to update the PC’s BIOS / UEFI, so as to avoid problems during this delicate procedure (which can safely destroy the computer if performed incorrectly or if the power goes out during the process).
BIOS / UEFI PC update
The BIOS or UEFI update operation is quite delicate, but fortunately, it will take us a few minutes (often just a few seconds). In the following chapters, we will show you how to properly update the BIOS (on older PCs) and UEFI update (on newer PCs).
What is BIOS / UEFI
The BIOS or UEFI (latest version) are essential components in a computer to be able to initiate the operating system startup procedures. In fact, it allows the motherboard to boot, to carry out preliminary checks on all the components present on it, and to correctly start the CPU, RAM, and system disk, so as to be able to move on to the next phase of the boot (the bootloader, which will start the actual operating system). It can be customized by accessing a secret menu as soon as the computer is started, from which it is possible to change some settings on the hardware components (overclock, underclock, reserved system memory, temperatures, fan speed, etc.)
How to get the type of BIOS / UEFI
If we need to update the BIOS or UEFI on our computer, we will first have to retrieve the model of the motherboard in use, so we can check for any updates on the manufacturer’s website.
To get this information from any computer, just install the free Speccy program, downloadable from the official website.
Once installed on the PC, just start it and check the Motherboard section, from which we can obtain the manufacturer, the motherboard model, and the type of BIOS / UEFI present (under BIOS -> Brand ), so as to search for the update file suitable.
Alternatively, we can use the free CPU-Z program , capable of showing the same type of information. In this regard, we can read our guide on how to know the computer hardware and the individual pieces of the Windows PC.
How to check for BIOS / UEFI updates
Once you have the right information on the motherboard, we can search for a BIOS / UEFI update from the official website of the manufacturer, using one of the links below:
If our video card is part of one of these manufacturers, just visit the dedicated site, start a search for drivers and find the BIOS update file (we can recognize it as a new BIOS / UEFI since it is indicated with a date later than our purchase). If we own a notebook, we will have to check directly on the laptop manufacturer’s website, so that we can find any updates for the BIOS or UEFI.
On this page, you will find all the links to easily find and download the BIOS updates of the main computer and motherboard manufacturers: Acer, ASRock, ASUS, Dell, Fujitsu, Gigabyte, HP, Huawei, Intel, Lenovo, LG, Panasonic, Microsoft, MSI, Toshiba, and Vaio.
How to update the BIOS / UEFI
Unlike the operating system, the BIOS / UEFI is low-level software stored on the chip on the computer motherboard. Failing a BIOS / UEFI update can cause your computer to malfunction which makes it unusable and even difficult to repair without the intervention of a specialized technician. Having made these necessary clarifications, we proceed to download the update file, which will allow you to update the BIOS or UEFI in different ways:
- file to flash from the BIOS / UEFI itself (see how to enter the BIOS ).
- File to install Create a DOS Live USB pen (using the Rufus program ), with which to start the computer from USB and perform the procedure described in the instruction file.
- .Exe file to run and install directly from Windows (the fastest and most practical method).
- Computer update program that also includes the BIOS.
In the third and fourth cases, you can proceed without too much anxiety and everything should be fine; in the first two cases, however, you need to be a little expert and know what you are going to do.
If we want to update directly from BIOS / UEFI (the simplest and most immediate procedure), just place the update file inside a USB key, start BIOS / UEFI, go to the advanced settings then open the section reserved for updates ( EZ Flash or similar names) enter the key and select the downloaded file, so you can start the update.
Alternatively, we can use the executable update file, to be started within Windows like any other program.
To implement this procedure in complete safety, we recommend that you disable any type of antivirus (including Windows Defender included in Windows 10 ) and stop any program in the background before proceeding. For maximum safety, we recommend updating the BIOS via an executable only from safe mode, which we can activate as seen in our guides How to enter safe mode on Windows 10 and How to start Windows in safe mode to solve problems.
The other procedures are quite similar, but we recommend that you always use the notebook battery or a UPS for the Desktop PC, so that you can terminate the procedure even in the event of a sudden power failure (one of the worst scenarios when updating the BIOS or UEFI). In this regard, we recommend that you read our article on how to use the UPS as a battery for your computer when there is no power.
Updating the BIOS or UEFI is a fairly simple procedure to apply on modern computers, but we advise you to do it only in case of real need (a patch for a known vulnerability or a new hardware component), since in case of errors we can never go back, effectively rendering the PC unusable.
Finally, we recommend that you be wary of any tool not certified by the manufacturer, which promises to update the BIOS automatically: in many cases, they are scams and do not guarantee any success of the procedure.
Still, on the subject of BIOS, we can read our guide on how to switch from BIOS to UEFI and convert the disk to GPT (Windows 10).
To boot your computer directly from USB (bypassing the bootloader or a locked Windows), we recommend that you read our article on How to boot from USB.